Dr. Mark Umbreit is a Professor and founding Director of the Center for Restorative Justice & Peacemaking at the University of Minnesota, School of Social Work. Mark serves on the faculty of the Center for Spirituality & Healing in the Academic Health Center at the University of Minnesota, teaching courses on Peacebuilding Through Mindfulness Practice, and Forgiveness & Healing. He also serves as a Visiting Professor at the Marquette University Law School in Milwaukee teaching a course on Peacemaking and Spirituality. In past years, Mark has also served as a Fellow of the International Centre for Healing and the Law, and a Fellow of the Center for Contemplative Practice in Society. He is an internationally recognized practitioner and scholar with more than forty years of experience as a mediator, peacemaker, trainer, teacher, researcher, and author of 11 books and more than 200 other publications in the fields of restorative justice, mediation, spirituality, forgiveness, and peacemaking. Dr. Umbreit has conducted training seminars and lectures throughout the world, in Asia, Africa, Europe, the Mideast, and North and South America.
As a practitioner, he facilitates peace-building circles in the community, and restorative dialogues between family survivors of homicide and the offender in their quest for healing and strength. Over recent years he has worked with colleagues in Northern Ireland, Italy, Liberia, and Israel/Palestine on peace building initiatives.
Mark has provided technical assistance and training in support of restorative justice initiatives and victim offender mediation programs in hundreds of communities, including in nearly every state of the U.S. and in twenty-three other countries. Dr. Umbreit’s multi-site and multi-national research has contributed significantly to restorative justice policy development in the U.S. and other countries, as well as providing resource materials and guidance to practitioners. Mark recently worked as a Senior International Consultant with the United Nations Development Program and the Ministry of Justice in Turkey to support their legislative efforts to implement victim offender mediation throughout the country. At the National Restorative Justice Conference in June of 2013 Dr. Umbreit was elected the founding President of the new National Association for Community and Restorative Justice in the U.S. and was re-elected to a second term.